20 Affordable & Fun Things to Do with Kids in South Haven
South Haven during the summer is a wonderful place to explore and have fun with kids.
Planning your next visit with kids is easier when you know where to go and what to do. Here is a quick, no fuss list of affordable things to do this summer in South Haven, some are even FREE!
1. Kid’s Corner Playground – 563 Monroe Boulevard, South Haven
- Playground, picnic area, and shelter
- Diamond with benches, perfect for a baseball or kickball game
- Beautiful views, located across from the bluff overlooking Lake Michigan
Insider Info: Wear your beach clothes and bring beach toys, the Blue Stairs to South Beach are located across the street.
2. Black River Books – 330 Kalamazoo Street Suite 2, South Haven
- Independently owned bookstore offering quality used books, with a specific area furnished for kids
- The kids section offers carefully selected new children’s books and many used books too
- Kids categories include storybooks, children’s classics, educational, and young adult books
Insider Info: Cozy chairs are available for examining possible purchases.
3. Chomp Gourmet Hot Dogs – Corner of Eagle Street & Kalamazoo Street, South Haven
- Enjoy quick & tasty gourmet hot dogs at their walk-up window
- Open Memorial Day through Labor Day
- Choose one of their signature dogs or build your own with many fresh topping options
Insider Info: A vegan option is available for a nominal upcharge.
4. South Haven Public Beaches – Various Lakeshore Locations
- Build sandcastles and hunt for beach glass
- Swing at the beach -- playgrounds on North and South Beaches
- Soak up some sun and swim in Lake Michigan
Insider Info: No trip to the beach is complete without experiencing at least one South Haven sunset, beach map found here.
5. SoHa Surf Shop Rentals – 518 Phoenix Street, South Haven
- Rental locations include: North Beach, South Beach and Black River Park
- Paddleboards, single and tandem kayaks, and canoes
- One hour, two hour and all-day rentals available, book online
Insider Info: Black River Park has a handicap launch available.
6. The Sun Setter – 345 Water Street, South Haven
- Enjoy a scenic tour of the Lake Michigan shoreline during a day or a sunset cruise
- The Sun Setter normally operates 7 days a week, mid-May through early October
- Children of all ages are welcome; walk-ons are accommodated if space is available or spots can be reserved ahead of time
Insider Info: Bring a cooler with snacks and drinks to enjoy during the cruise.
7. Splash Pad – 60 Water Street, South Haven
- A safe alternative for younger children wanting to enjoy water play
- Modeled after the Friends Good Will ship and located east of South Beach, it is easily spotted
- Picnic tables and grassy areas nearby offer families space to relax and watch the water fun
Insider Info: Take a break and grab a treat at the nearby South Beach Cafe.
8. Michigan Theatre of South Haven – 210 Center Street, South Haven
- Renovated movie theatre with comfortable seating
- Latest digital cinema releases at affordable prices
- Fun and fresh concession fare
9. Michigan Maritime Museum – 260 Dyckman Avenue, South Haven
- Authentic waterfront campus offers hands-on exhibits in five separate structures
- Enjoy on-water experiences aboard their fleet of period and replica vessels
- Maritime District Harborwalk runs pier head to pier head with informative historic markers
Insider Info: The Maritime District Harborwalk is approximately 3.2 miles (5k), find the map here.
10. Stanley Johnston Park – 202 Dyckman Avenue, South Haven
- Enjoy the swings and basketball court
- Picnic shelter with tables and gazebo with views of the harbor
- Close to downtown South Haven
Insider Info: Plan a game of hide and seek, the tall trees in the park are the perfect setting.
11. Liberty Hyde Bailey Museum & Gardens – 903 S. Bailey Avenue, South Haven
- The historic home features both permanent and rotating historical exhibits
- Lovely gardens feature interpretive signage and community garden plots
- The short nature trail winds through a beautiful stand of woods
Insider Info: Summer hours run May – September. During the “off-season” museum is open by appointment.
12. Elkenburg Park – 309 Elkenburg Street, South Haven
- Full size basketball courts with bleachers
- Picnic area with grills and restrooms
- Updated playground area
Insider Info: Bring your basketball, friends, and A game because the basketball courts are on point!
13. Lakeside Entertainment – 09921 Blue Star Memorial Highway, South Haven
- 16 lane bowling alley
- American restaurant offering daily specials
- Seasonal outdoor 18-hole miniature golf course
Insider Info: 200+ seat restaurant/lounge serves lunch & dinner daily.
14. Rocket Arcade – 237 Broadway Street, Suite 6, South Haven
- Over 75 retro games including pinball for people of all ages to enjoy
- During Open Play, just walk-in and enjoy unlimited free play for one low price
- Family passes and micro rentals also available
Insider Info: Bring your quarters, some additional games are coin operated, including air hockey, foosball, Star Wars, Terminator and more.
15. Pilgrim Haven Natural Area – 18th Avenue, South Haven
- A delightful beach covered in rocks of varying colors, sizes, and shapes.
- Barrier free access, family friendly hiking and wildlife viewing.
- Open to the public and admission is free.
Insider Info: Visit Dimitridon Rocks and Studio in Downtown South Haven, find books about rocks and answers to your rock questions.
16. Hood Outdoors – 7078 73rd 1/2 Street, South Haven
- Indoor archery range, including 3D targets, cricket targets and more
- Rental bows are available-all ages and sizes
- Fishing equipment including rods, reels, and tackle
Insider Info: An outdoor archery range is being planned.
17. Bumbleberry Acres – 6785 Baseline Road, South Haven
- Plan a day of family fun on the farm
- U-pick fruits & vegetables during the season
- Free petting zoo, playground & memories.
Insider Info: Bumbleberry Acres is a farm member of Lakeshore Harvest Country Agritourism Trail, visit some of the other farm members of the trail and discover more family friendly fun.
18. Sherman’s Dairy Bar – 1601 Phoenix Street, South Haven
- 32 homemade flavors, varies throughout the season – diary free and no sugar added options
- Other treats include flurry’s, sodas, shakes and malts
- Undecided, try a Sherman’s flight, 6 sample size scoops of any flavor ice cream
Insider Info: Order wisely, a baby is really a generous small and a double waffle cone feeds a family of 4!
19. Kal-Haven Trailhead – 51 Bailey Avenue, South Haven
- A 34-mile former railroad bed linking South Haven to Kalamazoo
- The trail crosses over bridges and passes through beautiful wooded areas and small towns
- Perfect trail for nature walks and biking with a covered bridge 1 ½ miles from the South Haven trailhead
Insider Info: Bike rentals are available at Rock ‘N’ Road Cycle of South Haven, including kid’s bikes, tandems, trailers & tag-a-longs. Helmet & lock included with all rentals.
20. Skate Park – 901 E. Wells Street, South Haven
- Open year round
- Shared parking with the Kal-Haven Trailhead
- Situated on three quarters of an acre, plenty of space to practice skills
Insider Info: Check out this cool South Haven Skate Park video here.